August 30, 2018

SWV - Still (Target Exclusive) (2016)

*Target retail store release. Contains 3 bonus live tracks. 13 tracks total.
Country: U.S.A.
Genre: R&B
.FLAC via Mega (Link)
.AAC 256 kbps via Mega (Link)

© 2016 Mass Appeal Entertainment/eOne
AllMusic Review by Andy Kellman
Part of what made I Missed Us a remarkable return for SWV was the freshness of the material and lack of forced-sounding references to the group's past. A fair portion of Still, released almost four years later, doesn't have those qualities in its favor, and the level of song quality isn't quite as high. Producer and songwriter Cainon Lamb, who brought so much to I Missed Us, once again works closely with the group, as does associate Derrick "Bigg D" Baker, along with a small cast of additional contributors. "MCE (Man Crush Everyday)," a sparkling slow jam, is among SWV's best, while the throwback ballad "When Love Didn't Hurt" and relatively contemporary "Miss You" are close behind it. Other songs are more likely to make a listener think of SWV's catalog or songs by other artists. "Still" sets the tone, relying upon a hook of "I'm still into you" to such a heavy extent -- in clear reference to "I'm So Into You," one of the group's biggest early hits -- that it lacks an identity of its own. Samples and references to the likes of Patrice Rushen, the James Ingram-fronted Zingara, the Four Tops, and Amy Winehouse are so frequent that they seem less like mixtape-style playfulness and more like substitutions for original ideas. Additionally, a DJ Mustard facsimile -- a bid to fit in with contemporary R&B radio -- doesn't sound right, either. Had this been SWV's 2010s return, it would have been adequate, but it's a lengthy backward stride from I Missed Us.

tags: swv, still, target version, 2016, flac,


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